So God Made a Teacher Collection (Sale!) ➔

Some days I send my kids to school in a way I’m not proud of. The mornings can be rough. 

First, they won’t get out of bed. Then they won’t eat breakfast. They don’t want what’s on their plates, and I don’t have what they do want, and an argument ensues. An unnecessary battle that lasts far too long and suddenly the clock says if they don’t get upstairs and dressed RIGHT NOW, they’re going to miss the bus.

If only it were that easy.

Up we go to get dressed and more drama. The outfits I’ve chosen aren’t right. Even though it’s cold, he wants to wear shorts, and even though it’s a gym day, she wants to wear sandals. 

He doesn’t want to brush his teeth. He’s much too busy playing with toys with no socks on, half-dressed, and I’m feeling like I can’t win. When I finally convince him he has to brush at the last minute, he spits toothpaste all over the shirt he insisted on wearing. It’s too late to change even if I could get him to. Which I can’t. Instead, we rush for the bus which is already at the stop and the driver patiently waits because he sees us coming, and I scold, “See we almost missed it because you were messing around!” And I don’t kiss them because a driver behind the bus honksclearly in more of a hurry than we wereand it’s all very chaotic as they scramble up the steps, probably feeling glad to be leaving me and all my instructions behind.

Finally, it’s over and I think, “Thank goodness! Thank goodness they’re someone else’s problem today.”

But then I return to the house. And I clean up the breakfast dishes filled with food they didn’t eat, and I think, “They’re going to be hungry.” And I put away the clothes he wouldn’t wear and I think, “He’s going to be cold,” and, “Her feet are going to hurt at gym.”

And I don’t feel glad they’re gone anymore.

I wish I’d done everything differently. I wish the entire morning had gone better.

I don’t blame them. I blame myself. A million small decisions made by me that created the monster. While they didn’t make things easy for me, I know I had the power to make things happen differently. I should have slowed down and listened and reasoned and let things go. I should have chosen battles instead of letting my frustration get the best of me and letting everything turn into an argument. Things snowballed into ugliness and now all day long, I’m left with feelings of regret. 

Every mom has these days. There are going to be days you don’t have the ability to run the ship smoothly. Your patience will be tried, your anger tested. Your decisions will not warrant rational responses. Not having the type of cereal they want shouldn’t create anarchy. You can’t change that. But you can change your response to it. Instead of letting it heat up, walk away. Instead of getting mad, give them space. Give yourself space. Or laugh. Or pray.

A friend suggested to let them feel the consequences of some of their decisions. If it won’t really hurt them, let it go. If they skip breakfast and feel hunger, perhaps the next day they will not argue over what is on their plates. And if they’re cold because they refused a jacket, they’ll likely wear one the next day without a reminder.

Give yourself a break.

You can’t be a perfect mother. You aren’t a perfect person. You feel emotions. You feel frustration. It just means you’re human.

Learn from your mistakes, too. Give yourself more time. Don’t yell. And always kiss them before they get on the bus, even if a hundred cars are honking. No one should be able to take that away from you. Show them you love them, remind them . . . remind yourself. Today is only one day. There is always tomorrow.

You may also like: 

To Jesus, From the Tired Mom Who’s Trying

This is Why Moms Are So Exhausted


Caroline Murray

Caroline is a freelance writer, mama to two young children and one sweet baby.  She loves everything country and tries not to take anything too seriously.  You can see more of her at

Who Will Wash Your Shoes When I’m Gone?

In: Motherhood
a pair of yellow crocs

Who will wash your shoes when I am no longer here? This crossed my mind yesterday, as I soaked the only shoes you’ll wear. The yellow lime ones. The ones you’ve learned to put on yourself. The ones that help you hop and skip down the street. RELATED: The Struggle You Don’t See in a Special Needs Family The ones that take us to the park and the ice cream store. The ones that you kick off once you’re home. Tears ran down my face as the water washed the soap away. I try to keep your shoes clean. Because...

Keep Reading

That Older than Average Student is Braver than You Know

In: Living, Motherhood
woman in scrubs holding baby and patting horse

My freshman year of college I was 18 and felt like I had my whole future planned out and set in front of me. I was taking equine science and pursuing a career with horses, which I loved. One of the first classes I took was a very tight-knit, hands-on class on a farm. In this class, there were only about six or seven people so you were able to work and learn alongside each other as a team and got to know everyone well. The oldest person in the class was a mom in her early 30s who was...

Keep Reading

What the Mama in the Meltdown Really Needs

In: Child, Motherhood, Toddler

I was so excited to enroll my 3-year-old daughter into gymnastics—she’s my always active, fearless, stubborn, and daring girl. The girl whose teachers had to ask me to remind her that swinging from arch to arch in the classroom was not OK, and who has nearly given me heart attacks flipping off the couch. The girl who has so much high energy, that I know getting it all out with sports would be so healthy for her. The girl who is fierce about doing everything “by herself . . . “ I just knew she would love gymnastics. And she...

Keep Reading

My Mom Delivers a Favorite Dish to My Family Every Month and it’s the Best Gift Ever

In: Living, Motherhood
Grandma with grandkids and food

For Christmas, Mom and Dad gave each of my sisters and me a note with a pan of frozen lasagna. The note read: During the year of 2022 you will receive a Mama’s Recipe (cook’s choice) delivered to your door one time monthly by Papa’s Food Truck.” (The “food truck” is just my mom and dad delivering food to my sisters and me—not an actual business.) Part of the gift includes the container the food comes in. The list for each month is below. You’ll also find recipes (where available) and links to the containers.  PS: If you click and...

Keep Reading

I Love Having a Friend With a New Baby

In: Baby, Friendship, Motherhood
Woman snuggling newborn baby

To my sweet friend with a newborn, Thank you. This stage you’re in is the sweetest, most innocent, and challenging time. The exhaustion and love are overwhelming I know—I feel like I was just there yesterday with my own kids. Only, it wasn’t yesterday. Even though I can close my eyes and remember those precious moments with my own newborns, it feels so far in the past. I love the age my kids are now, but I’m telling you, there’s something magical about those first few weeks of life. When your baby scrunches their body into a ball when you...

Keep Reading

Childhood Is Messy with Imagination and I Want to Remember It All

In: Kids, Motherhood
Toys on bedroom floor

Sometimes I take random photos on my phone of my son’s bedroom or what he has built with his LEGOs. I do this because I know how quickly things change while he is this young. What he builds with LEGOs is always evolving, becoming more intricate and sophisticated. When I look around his room and see everything that is there, it’s like a snapshot of the season we are in. And all I want to do is capture each season. Capture what life looks like for us, for him. I envision showing him these photos when he is grown, maybe...

Keep Reading

Is Anyone Really a Natural When it Comes to Motherhood?

In: Motherhood
Tired mom

Ever since I was little I’ve been drawn to the ideals of motherhood. I would prance around the neighborhood with dolls piled high in my best friend’s stroller. We would set up shop on the lawn with blankets made into makeshift beds and clothes sprawled out everywhere. When I was 12, I took a babysitting course and went around the block knocking on doors and telling the neighbors I was ready for hire. I babysat regularly and was known as a baby whisperer. My life’s goal was to be a mom, and my whole life everyone told me I’d be...

Keep Reading

6 Things the Parent of a Child With Medical Needs Learns

In: Kids, Motherhood
Child holding baby doll

My 9-year-old daughter was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes a few months before her 2nd birthday. She uses a continuous glucose monitor (CGM) to watch her blood glucose levels and a pump that administers insulin. Before these amazing pieces of medical technology, we were pricking her fingers up to 10 times a day and giving insulin injections at about the same rate—ouch! There are many parents out there with children with special medical needs. One mom I know has to give her autistic son enemas every day because of digestive issues. Another mom has a child with highly specialized dietary...

Keep Reading

As Another School Year Begins, Remember Mama: You Know Your Child Best

In: Kids, Motherhood
little girl holding a first day of kindergarten sign

Dear mom buying school supplies and feeling overwhelmed, Stop and pray. Ask God to help you envision each child as the young adult they can be. Write out your goals for that child . . . fair warning, there will likely be very little academic success in your goals. You may even have to go back and write those in. Take a deep breath. Keep this list of goals nearby. Go back and read them when the world is telling you your child doesn’t stack up somewhere. They aren’t reading as fast, they’re not “getting” math, their handwriting is wonky,...

Keep Reading

Little Things Can Be Self Care Too

In: Motherhood
Woman reading a book

My third baby has never been a great night-time sleeper. Around eight months old, he decided to add more middle-of-the-night feedings. He went from his usual two nighttime nursing sessions to four, five, or even more. With all the wakeups, I was getting a dismal amount of sleep. My lack of sleep led to low energy, low patience, and an overall low mood. I was constantly tired and grumpy. When playing with my kids, I would feel like I was in a fog. I was not able to enjoy their silliness or creativity but instead became easily annoyed and frustrated....

Keep Reading

Get our FREE phone wallpaper to encourage you as the new school year begins

It's bittersweet for a mother to watch her child grow—but you both are ready to soar.